I don’t know why sometimes I’m inspired to talk about subjects that I know never truly bear any fruit. I mean, the idea that I do nothing, in the grand scheme of things, that the needle will never be moved by anything I would write, doesn’t seem to stop me from doing so. Does that make me an imbecile? Time will tell, I guess.
But Alas…. I decided as I’m somewhere in the middle of the Atlantic ocean 10 thousand feet in the air that I would write some ideas down. There is possibly no better time than now, since there is no in-flight entertainment, and I’ve had this itch I’ve needed to scratch for days.
To be angry at religion?
We were visiting a friend and as it usually happens the light conversations turn into politics and then into religion. I won’t say it surprised me, because no matter how many times I’ve heard someone point out, that it’s not in good taste to bring these subjects up, they always do.
I tend to stand somewhat in the sidelines of the “debate”, if we can even call it that. I believe that personal freedom is possibly the most valuable thing we have, and due to this ideal, do to this unmovable stance in my head, I too think that anyone should be allowed to love and praise the God or Gods for that matter they choose.
There is no way, or should I say. There shouldn’t be a way that what someone else believes should affect my life. Unless of course they are trying to dictate I too believe in the dogma, but that is another subject for another day.
What jumped out at me, or what has had me thinking for days now about our little get together was the reaction our host had about the whole thing. Being a non believer is nothing new to me, as a matter of fact, I’m part of the ranks. But hating religion, thinking it should be banished or destroyed for that matter is something I’ve never been able to sign up to.
This idea, the anti-theological stance, the anti-theists for that matter are nothing new to the landscape. As a matter of fact some of my favorite thinkers have come out as militants against belief systems and even though I do understand their reasoning, I think the mission is pointless.
Many have tried...
There’s a few well documented attempts to force the secularism of a nation and the record is not very ingratiating so to speak. Not only was it not possible for it to happen, it kind of ended up distorting the whole idea of secularism. Instead of worshiping ethereal idols. Deities, they became worshipers of men, of ideologies.
If you ask me which one is more toxic, I’d had to say I’m not sure there’s a clear cut formula here, but I do know that in the available historical examples the record speaks for itself. The word chaos does not completely cover it, and nothing that destroys life can be defended morally in my opinion.
I’ll grant you
there are plenty of things wrong with religions, and there is not many I can defend in their entirety. Human nature is corruptible and as such, the corruptibility permeates everything we’ve ever done . The most noble of intentions can become nightmares if the conditions are just right for such thing to happen.
This is why it’s not hard for me to accept, to concede that most of the horrible things religions have done are reprehensible and truly disgusting. When religion had a grip of society as a whole it was for all intent and purposes judge, jury and executioner. And, boy did it commit atrocities.
One has to pick up a story or two about colonialism to feel sick to the stomach, but as important as knowing these events is, this is not the version of religion most people today practice. Again, I’ll grant you the few too may who believe in barbaric practices, but I’m referring to most, not the members of fringe town.
I’ll end with one point.
And hope that regardless of your skepticism, or lack thereof, we can land safely in common ground.
It will never go away, not really, not entirely, not as long as we fear dying and maybe that is exactly what it all comes down to. None of us want to die, yet we know we will one day and we find a lot of comfort, a lot of warmth in religions, in communities who assure us that our current life is not all that there is.
I happen to think the idea, at least on it’s own, Is not only benign, but possibly even positive. We all need to learn to cope with the things we cannot change. Losing a loved one is an event that requires all of our strength to overcome, and a belief system seems adequate to aid us, if you will, get back on our feet.
So why be mad at something you cannot change? Why be angry at people who are looking for comfort and meaning? That part does not pass muster in my book.
Get rid of all religious books, lobotomize everyone who believes in a God and from the ashes of a confused society, people will come up with new ones all over again.